Maize Growth, Fodder Yield and Nutrient Uptake in relation to Phosphorus and Sulphur Nutrition

Inzamam-ul-Haque Khanzada, Naheed Akhter Talpur, Zia-ul-Hassan Shah, Ghulam Murtaza Jamro, Javaid Ahmed Shah, Khalid Hussain Talpur, Ahmed Naqi Shah


Phosphorus (P) and Sulphur (S) are the most important plant nutrients which play significant roles in enhancing the early growth and development and increasing the fodder yield of maize. This important field study was planned to evaluate the P-S interaction effects on maize growth, fodder yield and nutrient (P and S) uptake. The soil used for study was clay loam, medium-alkaline (pH: 7.9), non-saline (EC: 0.85 dS m-1), strongly calcareous (CaCO3: 24 %), adequate in organic matter (1.6 %), low in ABDTPA-P (3.5 mg kg-1), while medium in SO4-S (21.5 mg kg-1). Eight P and S treatments were involved in this study, i.e. single application of each 90 kg P2O5 (T1) and 20 kg S ha-1 (T2); integration of 90 kg P2O5 with S @ 20, 40 and 60 kg ha-1 (T3, T4 and T5, respectively), and integration of 120 kg P2O5 with S @ 20, 40 and 60 kg ha-1 (T6, T7 and T8, respectively). The experiment followed an RCBD arrangement that was replicated thrice. Recommended seed rate of maize (95 kg ha-1) was used for sowing. The results revealed that shoot biomass production was maximum when maize plants received higher doses of P and S in an integrated manner (120-60 kg P2O5-S ha-1). At 30 DAS, shoot fresh biomass was found maximum, and statistically alike, when 90 or 120 kg P2O5 was integrated with S @ 60 kg ha-1. Shoot fresh biomass was maximum, at 40 DAS when 120-60 kg P2O5-S ha-1 was applied to maize. Shoot dry biomass after 30 days of sowing was highest when 90 kg P2O5 was applied with S @ 60 kg ha-1 or when, 120 kg P2O5 was used with S @ 40 and 60 kg ha-1. Shoot length was maximum, both at 30 and 40 DAS, in case of using 120-60 kg P2O5-S ha-1. Chlorophyll content of maize was maximum, both at 30 and 40 DAS, when 90 kg P2O5 was applied with S @ 60 kg ha-1. Maximum fodder yield of maize was noted when 120 kg P2O5 was applied with 60 kg S ha-1. Highest P-uptake, both at 30 and 40 DAS was noted when 120 kg P2O5 was applied with S @ 60 kg ha-1. At the first stage of growth, S-uptake was highest when 60 kg S was integrated with 90 kg P2O5 ha-1. The study advocated integrated application of 120-60 kg P2O5-S ha-1 for obtaining economically maximum fodder yield of maize.


Phosphorus; Sulphur; P-S interaction; Maize; Fodder yield; Nutrient uptake

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